Nadal reaches first Wimbledon quarter-final since 2011
Tennis

Nadal reaches first Wimbledon quarter-final since 2011

World number one Rafael Nadal reached his first Wimbledon quarter-final since 2011 with a straight-sets win over unseeded Czech Jiri Vesely.

The second seed, 32, converted his third match point to win 6-3 6-3 6-4.

The Spaniard is still on track to meet top seed Roger Federer – on the 10th anniversary of their epic 2008 final – in Sunday’s men’s singles showpiece.

Nadal will play either Argentine fifth seed Juan Martin del Potro or France’s Gilles Simon in the last eight.

The 17-time Grand Slam champion is playing his first tournament since winning an 11th French Open title last month after pulling out of Queen’s – a move that appears to be paying dividends.

Nadal looks refreshed and in peak condition both mentally and physically having not dropped a set on his way to the quarter-finals.

“It is an important moment for me. I’m happy to be where I am and playing well,” he told BBC Sport.

“They have been four positive matches, I haven’t played on grass for a year and I’m hoping to keep enjoying it.”

Nadal had beaten Vesely in their only previous meeting three years ago, but the 6ft 6in Czech has a big game that can trouble the very best.

On the equivalent day here last year Nadal lost a late-evening thriller to another big-serving left-hander when Gilles Muller beat him 15-13 in the fifth set after more than four and three-quarter hours.

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